Native American President Speaks To U.S. Senate On Internet Gambling

This story was published more than 12 years ago.

A native american president has testified in front of a Senate committee in Washington D.C., saying he believes private gambling companies are seeking an "instant monopoly" on legalized online gambling.

Speaking before the Senate Committee On Indian Affairs, Seneca Nation President Robert Odawi Porter said that he believes private companies pursuing online gambling as a threat to his tribe's sovereignty.

“Like land homesteaders and gold stake claimers before them, these Nevada and New Jersey moguls see Indian gaming as a competitive threat and are determined to shove Indian gaming away from the table or, at best, deal Indian gaming a short hand,” Porter said.

He then proceeded to say that companies are aiming to get congress to legalize online gambling, saying the efforts are "…a brazen power grab premised on the fiction that the big Nevada and New Jersey interests are alone sophisticated enough to operate Internet gaming in the first wave.”

When asked if Native American tribes could operate their own online gambling sites, Porter stated, “I have no question that we would be able to compete and thrive.”

After the hearing, Mr. Porter spoke to the Buffalo News, saying that his tribe is not pursuing online gambling at the moment, but would like the opportunity to offer online gambling if Congress passes legislation legalizing the card game.